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In The Spirit World - Chapter 10
A Place for the Birdmen
Laidan was excited. “Now that we found a short way to Gimokodan… we have to prepare to go at once! Nibor promised a number of birdmen to fly us to the top of Ugis…”
“We need to help Nibor’s people first… they are going to die out there in the plain without water and without food,” Agawe reminded Laidan. “They need a place to settle…”
“But where..?” Ayong asked.
They all turned to Encanta who seemed to be in deep thought.
“If my people knew how to fight like warriors, we could have defended ourselves. Amma is wrong! Even peaceful people need to fight sometimes!” She looked at Agawe, “you think if I allow the birdmen to settle in one part of our kingdom, their warriors can train my people?”
“I’m sure they will, Encanta, I’m sure they will…” Agawe assured her.
The sky turned black as huge birds came flying to Dilikan Kingdom. The injured were given treatment immediately. Water and food were provided as soon as they landed.
King Waku thanked Encanta and Agawe. “I am forever grateful for the treatment you have provided for Nibor’s injury. My son could have died without your help….”
“Nibor is your son? He is the Prince of Uwak Kingdom?” Agawe asked.
“Yes… and to show my gratitude, I will personally oversee the training of the Dilikans to become warriors… and as promised, the birdmen warriors will help you in Gimokodan.”
On the day they were to go into Gimokodan, they all came together at the palace courtyard. Everyone knew what to do.
A group of strong birdmen warriors will do battle against the colugos so Agawe and his group can get into the mouth of the volcano.
One birdman was assigned each to Agawe, Gayon, Ayong, and Laidan while Nibor took Encanta on his back. More than a dozen huge birdmen warriors flew up, followed by Nibor and the rest. Agawe took a deep breath before he ordered his birdman named Limbas, to fly.
Agawe knew they were near when the sulfuric air filled his lungs. Immediately, a group of colugos glided toward them but Limbas soared upward giving way to the bird warriors to engage the lemurs in battle. Agawe looked down and saw that the birdmen shot sharp, dagger-like weapons from their wings and those same wings were used as shields when the colugos glided near enough to use their sharp claws.
They reached the volcano crater which spewed sulfuric fumes. They landed on the crater floor of rocks brimming with deposits of yellow sulfur. The five huge birds promptly transformed into human forms. As Gayon and Ayong began to gasp for air, a strong wind pushed the poisonous fumes away leaving them with less fatal air.
“Thank you, Encanta,” Ayong caught his breath.
They stood on the solid rock ground and could not find a way in. Agawe pulled his sword and started poking around in the crater sides. Gayon and Ayong did the same with their swords.
Suddenly, the ground caved in under their feet and they fell headlong into a dark chasm.
Agawe heard the ‘swoosh’ of the birdmen’s wings as they transformed into black birds and swooped down to catch each of them.
When everyone was safe on a black bird’s back, Agawe sighed with relief as they traversed a wide sea of fiery molten lava. Even from where they were, Agawe broke into a sweat which could also be from the fear that gripped him when they fell into the pitch black abyss.
It felt like eternity before they reached the end of the sea and came to the edge of a thick forest. The birdmen found a place to land and when everyone got off, the huge birds promptly turned into men.
“So this is Gimokodan?” Gayon whispered.
“It looks like our world,” Ayong whispered back. “But it’s eerie…”
Atina and Her Warriors
An indescribable sound suddenly filled the air. It’s a battle cry, Agawe thought. Then he saw an army of warriors with horrible weapons in their hands attacking them. “Ambush!” he yelled and pulled his sword. He grabbed Encanta by the waist as he blocked the blows and fought the onslaught of the fierce enemies.
The air was filled with the sound of steel clashing, of grunts and raging screams. When it was over, the attackers were on the ground injured and moaning. Some were bleeding. Agawe wondered how the inhabitants of Gimokodan could shed blood.
“Who are you?” Laidan asked.
“Why are you attacking us…!?” Gayon screamed.
Someone moved forward. “My name is Atina. I am their leader. We are the maganis trapped in here.”
Agawe was stunned. A beautiful woman stood before them, her golden brown skin glistened with sweat and her long straight hair pulled in a pony tail at the top of her head. His gaze traveled to the short woven red velvet top and the red velvet skirt held by a black and silver belt. He even noticed her black sandals with a webbing of straps running across her legs.
He jerked when Gayon elbowed him, “Agawe… we are wasting time…” he whispered.
“Ahh… are… all of you… women…? Agawe wondered why he asked such a senseless question.
“Yes… we are the women maganis!” She turned to Gayon, “we attacked you because we thought you are the souls below us. Those souls come up here to try to steal our bodies so they can escape from Gimokodan.”
“Atina…” Laidan spoke up, “we are not from Gimokodan… we are here to save the Encantor souls. Do you know where they are?”
“You are from the outside? You found a way in here?” Atina could not contain her excitement.
“Yes… and we…”
Atina suddenly erupted into a cheer, “Did you hear that?” she turned to her warriors most of whom were still on the ground, “They got in so that means we can also get out!” They all cheered joyfully.
Laidan looked at Agawe and sighed in exasperation.
“Atina… Atina… listen!” When Laidan got Atina’s attention, he patiently explained, “I don’t know why you are so happy about our coming in here but we are here for a reason… we need to find the Encantor souls.”
“The spirit souls? I’ve heard about them! I know where they are!” she declared excitedly. “You take all of us back with you and I am not only going to tell you where they are… I will help you go and save them!” she offered.
Laidan shook his head. “We can’t take you, Atina… there’s just too many of you… it will take time! We don’t have that much time! We need to get the Encantor souls out of here as soon as possible!”
“But you have to take us back! We’re not dead! We don’t belong here…” Atina pleaded seriously.
“I’m sorry, Atina…” Laidan was firm.
“Fine,” she said and a defiant look took over her face. “Good luck finding the souls! You can search the whole Gimokodan and you will never find them! You say you don’t have time…” she smirked, “you are going to spend eternity here!” She turned to her warriors, “Let’s go!”
“They are at the bottom pit…” Encanta said out loud.
Atina turned abruptly to Encanta, “What?!”
“I can read your mind…”
Read Chapter 11
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